Abundant Artwork Adorns
High Point Library
Every picture tells a story
Recessed into the brick exterior of the new High Point Library are terra cotta relief sculptures created by artist Steve Gardner.
The sculptures depict five tales from different cultures about the constellations and the sky. The result is a beautiful and moving picture story, honoring the diversity of the High Point neighborhood.
Why the Moon Is Free (Mexico)
This sculpture tells the story of how the Moon outsmarted the amorous advances of the Sun by making him promise to design a gown that would fit her perfectly. As she waxed and waned, he could never make it fit.
The Sky Camel (Somalia)
This legend refers to a dark spot in the southern night skies that has the shape of a camel without a tail. It is said that long ago this camel lived in a different part of the sky.
After a long drought, the people below tried to catch him by building a tower to the sky. When they grabbed the camels tail, he fled and his tail fell off, sending everyone to the ground.
The Silver River (Asia)
Tells the story of two lovers, the weaver maiden (Altair) and the buffalo boy (Vega) who are separated by the Silver River (the Milky Way).
They are allowed to be together for one week each year on the seventh day of the seventh month, which is when the two stars are closest to each other. They cross the Milky Way on a bridge of magpies.
Pushing Up the Sky (Snohomish Native American)
This star legend tells of how people long ago decided to push the sky up higher because it was too low.
Three hunters who were out hunting elk didn't hear about the plan, so when the fleeing elk jumped up into the sky, the hunters followed them and they were all raised up with the sky. The hunters and elk were turned into stars resulting in the constellation that we call the Big Dipper.
Phaeton and the Sun (Greece)
This is the legend of Phaeton, the son of Apollo, who is granted his one wish: to drive the chariot of the sun across the sky in place of his father.
However, he is too inexperienced due to his youth. His horses stampede and his chariot and the sun swoop too high, causing Earth to freeze. The chariot and sun then dip too low, causing the land to burn. Eventually, Zeus is forced to strike him down to save Earth.